By Carey Phillips


North Henderson pulled away in the second half Friday to defeat Smoky Mountain 86-44 in a Mountain Seven Conference men’s basketball game at the SM gym.

Brayden Corn led a balanced scoring attack for the Knights with 17 points. Also in double figures were Micah Pierce with 16, Joshua Heiny with 14 and Carter Whiteside with 10.

Malachi Smith had 10 points for the Mustangs (1-5, 0-2).

“We played hard in spurts and in spurts we didn’t play hard at all,” Coach Jimmy Cleaveland said. “We’re going to have to figure out four quarters. Hopefully, we can get some people back and build on some things. We’re going to have to handle some situations better when things don’t go our way.”

SM led 9-6 on Darien Bird’s basket with 4:25 to play in the first quarter and was tied 12-12 when Smith hit a three-pointer at the 2:53 mark.

Heiny put North ahead to stay, 14-12, with 2:10 on the clock, and the lead was 19-16 at the quarter break.

The Knights scored eight straight points to go up 36-24 on Marvin Williams’ steal and layup with 25 seconds to play in the half, which ended with the margin 36-25.

Corn scored five and Pierce had four in a 9-2 spurt for a 51-31 lead with 3:52 remaining in the third period.

Bryson Rowe’s three--pointer capped a 10-0 run building the lead to 63-35 with 32 seconds on the clock.

The Knights led 63-38 entering the fourth quarter.

They scored the game’s final 17 points, including five by Williams.

Nathaniel Baird’s basket at the 1:43 mark made it 84-44 putting a running clock in effect the remainder of the game.

Smith made a trio of three-pointers and a foul shot.

Matthew Brown added nine points, Bird and Sawyer Snider followed with six apiece, Brylen Conlin netted five, Max Buchanan scored four, and Jayce Stillwell and Evan Jamison both had two.

The JV game was not played due to COVID-19 issues in the North program.